Upper West DOVVSU records decreased domestic violence cases

Crime statistics available at the Upper West Regional branch of the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service indicate that  domestic violence cases in the Region have declined from 163 in 2010 to 139 in 2011.

The statistics also indicate that defilement of children less than 16 years of age have also decreased from 22 in 2010 to 13 in 2011, with a marginal decrease in assault cases from 38 in 2010 to 37 in 2011.

Detective Inspector Alfred Dapaah, DOVVSU Station Officer who gave the statistics to the GNA in Wa said female abduction also decreased from 17 cases in 2010 to 10 cases in 2011, with a marginal decrease in offensive conduct from 18 to 16 within the same period.

He noted however that failure to provide for children on the part of parents recorded a slight increase from 37 cases in 2010 to 40 cases in 2011, with rape recording three cases each in 2010 and 2011.

Detective Inspector Dapaah said cases sent to court decreased from 26 in 2010 to 16 in 2011, with a reduced number of convicted cases from seven in 2010 to two in 2011.

He said total number of cases under investigation had also decreased from 84 in 2010 to 30 in 2011, while total number of cases awaiting trial took a marginal increase from 10 in 2010 to 11 in 2011.

The DOVVSU Station Officer however expressed worry about the high number of cases still awaiting trial at the court, saying it delayed the justice process making impatient parents to put unnecessary pressure on DOVVSU officials, thinking they were responsible for the delay.

He said though DOVVSU was working very hard to defend the cause of the vulnerable in the Region, the Unit was faced with many challenges.

These include the lack of a vehicle to do follow-ups on reported cases and also for the Unit Commander to effectively monitor the activities of desk offices in the Region.

In addition, trained personnel transferred from the Region were often not replaced and the lack of limited office space threatened client privacy.

Detective Inspector Dapaah also stated that the non- availability of shelter for traumatized victims of domestic violence, coupled with court delays in prosecuting DOVVSU cases, were all obstacles hindering the work of the Unit.

Source: GNA

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